Transfer and Visiting Students

Transfer Students

Southwestern will consider applications to transfer to Southwestern from applicants who meet the below eligibility criteria and submit the required materials. An application file will not be considered complete, and cannot be reviewed, until all required materials are received.

Eligibility to Transfer

In order to be eligible to transfer to Southwestern, an applicant must:

  • Be in good standing at an American Bar Association (ABA)-accredited law school
  • Have completed their first year of legal education at their current ABA-accredited law school

Required Materials

  • Application for Admission
  • Personal Statement discussing reasons for transfer
  • Up-to-date official transcript from applicant's current law school
  • Letter of Standing from applicant's current law school
  • Enrollment Verification Form from applicant's current law school
  • Official CAS Report
  • Letter(s) of recommendation (can be submitted via CAS report)

Optional Materials

  • Class Rank (strongly recommended)
  • Résumé

Transfer Application Deadlines

Fall Entry - July 25
Priority Deadline

Spring Entry - November 15
Priority Deadline

Scholarships for Transfer Students

A select number of merit-based scholarships of up to $20,000 are available for transfer students who have demonstrated exceptional academic promise. Criteria for these scholarships include, but are not limited to, undergraduate grade point average, Law School Admission Test score(s), grade point average and/or rank during the first year of legal studies, leadership potential, and other outstanding personal accomplishments.

All admitted transfer applicants are considered for scholarships based upon the information submitted in their transfer admissions application files. Transfer students may be eligible for other scholarships following their first year at Southwestern.

Transfer Student Academic Policies

  • Southwestern will accept a maximum of 43 semester units as transfer credit toward the J.D. These 43 units may be counted toward the 87 needed to graduate.
  • Transfer credit will be granted only for courses completed with a letter grade of at least "C."
  • Credit/no credit (pass/fail) courses will not be accepted for transfer credit.
  • Transfer students will receive unit-only credit at Southwestern for units that are eligible for transfer credit. Letter grades received for units accepted as transfer credit will not be factored in to the transfer student's Southwestern GPA.
  • A course required by Southwestern for graduation will be deemed fulfilled if the equivalent course has been completed with a letter grade of at least "C" at a transfer student's former institution.
  • Transfer credit will not be granted for any course taken at a law school not approved by the American Bar Association.
  • Class standing and grade point averages for Southwestern are computed solely on the basis of grades achieved while matriculated at Southwestern.

The Dean of Students makes the final determination as to which courses will be accepted as transfer credit for admitted transfer students.

  1. Transfer Student FAQs

    Q: Should I send my transcripts, letter of standing, enrollment verification form and class rank to LSAC for processing?

    A: No. You should request that your law school submit these documents on your behalf directly to Southwestern. This will help reduce the processing time of your application.

    Q: Where can I find the Enrollment Verification Form?

    A: The Enrollment Verification Form is an attachment to the online transfer application available via LSAC.

    Q: What if my school is not able to submit my required documents by the application deadline?

    A: We understand that each law school operates on a different schedule and may not have all of your required documents ready by our application deadline. Please contact the Southwestern Admissions Office at 213-738-6834 or admissions@swlaw.edu if this information will not be available in time; we will do our best to work with you on this issue.

    Q: What is my likelihood of admission? How many students do you admit each year?

    A: The size of the applicant pool varies by year, but we do not limit the number of admissions offers based on "available seats." The Admissions Committee will evaluate individual candidates and offer admission based on the strength of their respective applications.

    Q: When will I find out which of my law school credits are transferable to Southwestern?

    A: Once a transfer applicant is admitted to Southwestern, the Southwestern Dean of Students will conduct a transcript credit analysis to determine which courses and credits are transferable. Your registration packet will include the analysis and suggested list of courses for the school year.

    Q: When is the deposit due?

    A: Because transfer admission offers are generally made close to the start of the semester, your seat deposit is due immediately upon receipt of your admissions offer.

    Q: Will I be able to participate in honors programs?

    A: Yes. Information regarding our honors programs is available to admitted transfer students via the MySWLAW student portal.

    Q: When is Orientation for transfer students?

    A: The first day of classes takes place in mid-August, and Orientation for transfer students takes place the week prior. Exact dates are announced and sent to entering students each year.

Visiting Students

Southwestern will consider Visiting Student Applications for the Fall and Spring semesters from applicants who meet the below eligibility criteria and submit the required materials. An application file will not be considered complete, and cannot be reviewed, until all required materials are received.

Eligibility to Attend as Visiting Student

In order to be eligible to visit Southwestern, an applicant must:

  • Be in good standing at an American Bar Association (ABA)-accredited law school

Required Materials

  • Application for Admission
  • Personal Statement discussing reasons for seeking visiting student status
  • Up-to-date official transcript from applicant's current law school
  • Letter of Standing from applicant's current law school
  • Enrollment Verification Form from applicant's current law school
  • Letter of Permission from applicant's current law school
  • Official CAS Report

Optional Materials

  • Class Rank
  • Résumé
  • Letter(s) of Recommendation

Visiting Student Application Deadlines

Fall Entry - July 25
Priority Deadline

Spring Entry - November 15
Priority Deadline

Visiting Students - Summer

Those interested in applying as a visiting student for the Summer Session can learn more here. Summer Session applications are processed through the Registration and Academic Records Office.